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Gertrude Stein's Transmasculinity$
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Chris Coffman

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781474438094

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474438094.001.0001

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‘Torquere’: Stein’s and Hemingway’s Queer Relationality

‘Torquere’: Stein’s and Hemingway’s Queer Relationality

(p.200) Chapter 6 ‘Torquere’: Stein’s and Hemingway’s Queer Relationality
Gertrude Stein's Transmasculinity

Chris Coffman

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter examines Stein’s friendship with Ernest Hemingway, whose initial supplication to her tutelage transformed into aggression in the wake of his observation of Toklas’s power over Stein. Whereas Stein admits in The Autobiography to having “a weakness for Hemingway”, Hemingway—who spoke of wanting to “lay” Stein—spitefully attacked her relationship with Toklas in A Moveable Feast in retaliation for her calling him “yellow.” Differences between the public and private Hemingway precipitated crises as he disavowed the possibility that his attraction to the masculine Stein may have been driven by a far queerer configuration of gender and desire than the heteronormative logics that governed the works he published during his lifetime. Considering A Moveable Feast as well as Stein’s and Hemingway’s shorter poems about one another—Stein’s “He and They, Hemingway” (1923), “Evidence” (1929), “Genuine Creative Ability” (1930), and “Sentences and Paragraphs” (1931); Hemingway’s “The Soul of Spain” (1924)—this chapter argues that their relationship’s troubling vicissitudes reverberated across their lives and works.

Keywords:   Gertrude Stein, Modernism, Masculinity, Transgender theory, Queer theory, Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast, “He and They, Hemingway”

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